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Upper/Lower cased letters in a URL

Posted on 2011-02-24
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Last Modified: 2012-05-11
Hey all,

Oddly, I just realized that URL's are case-sensitive.   I mean, I accidentally typed in a website addy in caps and it did not work, but when I went to lowercase...I was taken to the correct site...can anyone explain?
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Question by:ModifyMe
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5 Comments
 
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Expert Comment

by:Darius Ghassem
ID: 34970160
If the website or DNS is running Linux or Unix  then yes it could be case sensitive.

http://www.wisegeek.com/are-urls-case-sensitive.htm

http://www.coolnotions.com/Articles/Article_02.htm

 
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Expert Comment

by:David Kroll
ID: 34970167
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Expert Comment

by:omarfarid
ID: 34970180
both lower and upper case website names are working for me!
what browser are you using / os?
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Accepted Solution

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Daniel McAllister earned 250 total points
ID: 34972785
Let's be clear and consistent for ALL OS's:

 - The DOMAIN part of a URL is not, and cannot be case sensitive (for web URLs or e-mail addresses)
 - The username part of an e-mail address (and by inference then, the entire e-mail address) is not SUPPOSED to be case sensitive
 - The file locator in a URL is entirely host-dependent (server-side), and so may or may not be case sensitive
    In my experience, IIS (Windows) servers are NOT case sensitive, Apache (Linux) servers ARE case sensitive

Thus, for e-mail:
  Test@DoMaIn.CoM is DEFINITELY equivalent to Test@domain.com
  Test@DoMaIn.CoM is SUPPOSEDLY equivalent to test@domain.com

and for web pages:
  http://domain.com/index.html is DEFINITELY equivalent to HTTP://DOMAIN.COM/index.html
  but http://domain.com/index.html is PROBABLY different from HTTP://DOMAIN.COM/INDEX.HTML

These are the IETF specs...
 - DNS is a non-case-sensitive protocol (think back to the early days of the Internet and there were dozens of OSes being used -- some of which didn't have case-sensitive character sets!).
 - SMTP also comes from the same era, but some versions of MS Exchange WERE case sensitive (in violation of the specs) -- but MS really didn't care
 - HTTP came along much later and allows the server to decide how to handle case sensitivity on its part (the part AFTER the domain name!)

Lesson over... hope you learned something!

Dan
IT4SOHO
 
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Author Closing Comment

by:ModifyMe
ID: 34973545
Thank you for not sending me to links, but rather explaining.

Great explanation.

Thank you.
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